Glaucoma is an ocular condition where high eye pressures can lead to optic nerve damage. With nerve fiber loss from constant elevated eye pressures, peripheral vision will be lost first and then central vision in the advanced stages. As one of the leading causes of blindness, glaucoma is often known as the “silent thief of sight” because there are no symptoms.
You will not experience any pain or obvious decrease in vision, which is why most people don’t know they have glaucoma. Screening tests for glaucoma will be done at all eye examinations. Some risk factors for glaucoma is age, race, positive family history, elevated eye pressures, and larger cup to disk ratio of the optic nerve. There is not one specific test to diagnose glaucoma, but is determined by a series of screening tests done at your eye doctor’s office. If diagnosed by glaucoma, it can be treated with pressure lowering eye drops and surgery if needed. Early diagnoses and treatment is key to minimize the progression of glaucoma.